Blog site from internationally-selling poet and children's book author Steven Helmer showcasing movie and product reviews, nature photography and more.
Three Ways The Andy Griffith Show Taught Me How Not to Be a Dad
I was up but everyone else was in bed this Saturday morning and, to kill time, I wound up watching some re-runs of The Andy Griffith Show. While Andy Taylor (Griffith) is arguably one of the best TV dads off all time, I realized he does have some bad parenting habits that, as a dad myself, I would be reluctant to imitate.
Here are the three big ones:
Taking parent advice from non-parents. Specifically, he seems to value advice from his unmarried and childless deputy Barney Fife (Don Knotts). Not only does Barney have zero first-hand experience raising a child, he has never even proven to be wise about everyday things in general. He'd the last person I'd ask advice from, especially when it came to any of my children.
Letting his son wander alone and talk to strangers. OK, so obviously this show takes place in a different era when that probably wasn't as frowned upon as it is today. And, to be fair, Mayberry was mostly crime free, other than maybe the way people sometimes mysteriously disappeared and were never spoken of again. Still, when I watch Opie (Ron Howard) talking to someone like Mr. McBeevee (Karl Swensen), I see a very scary situation that, had it been an episode of Law & Order: SVU, would likely have ended tragically.
Purposely exposing his child to bad people. Aunt Bee (Frances Bavier) once criticized him for letting Opie hang around the jail, only to back down. She wasn't wrong. If Opie grew up around the town drunk and various other criminals and didn't turn out with some serious issues, that was pure luck. Heck, even today, I'm not convinced Opie and his secret gang didn't commit arson.
We have two cats in our house and they seem to go through a ton of cat food, to the point I feel like I'm constantly having to buy more. Adding to this is the fact my cats are apparently very picky about the food they eat and, even though they will occasionally eat Friskies canned food (my preference because it is cheaper and comes in bigger cans), they aren't overly thrilled with it and, instead, seem to have a preference for Fancy Feast (which is, of course, more expensive and comes in smaller cans). Having been a cat parent long enough to know the whole "let them go hungry until they eat it" trick doesn't work, at least if I don't want my cats keeping me up all night or getting on the counters/in the garbage, I have mostly just given up and purchased the more expensive cans of food for them. However, when I was at the grocery store last night (once again, for the sole purpose of buying cat food), I noticed the store added this brand to the shelf. Thi
My wife and I didn't have solid dinner plans last night so, as is usually the case when that happens, I wound up stopping at the grocery store on my way home and picking up a couple frozen pizzas for dinner. Since my daughters just like cheese pizza, I wound up getting them a cheap brand. But, I was in the mood to try something a little different so, after some consideration, I purchased the Pep's Drafthaus Prohibition Special for my wife and I. At $8.99, this pizza was more expensive than I would normally prefer to spend on a frozen pizza and, because of that, I did have some second thoughts about my purchase. However, cooking this pizza on our pizza oven last night and giving it a try, I do have to say I was very impressed with it. One of the reasons I took a chance on this brand when I saw it in the freezer was it looked like it had quite a few toppings on it. This included a lot of cheese, sausage, mushrooms, pepperoni, peppers and onions. Since lack of topping
Synopsis: Dorrie Ambler comes to Perry Mason with an unusual request. She needs both him and Paul Drake to examine her appendix scar so they can make a positive identification because she believes someone is trying to set her up as a patsy for Minerva Minden, an heiress that bears a striking resemblance to her. Minerva, however, has a different story - Dorrie is trying to blackmail her. When Dorrie is apparently kidnapped and a body is later found, Minerva is charged with murder and Mason decides to defend her. Review : I've read quite a few Perry Mason novels and some are more memorable than others. This one was definitely one of the more unusual ones. I think the thing I found most interesting about this book was the way it was unclear which of Mason's clients was the one telling the truth. Both told tales that seemed plausible but also a bit untruthful and it was difficult to figure out which was trying to pull the wool over Mason's eyes and why. I also liked how this b
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